My family supports Sgt. Alfreda Cromwell of the Shirley Police Department as a result of her unjust treatment.

Cromwell is no ordinary police officer. In the eyes of many in our community, she is extraordinary. What makes Cromwell a great police sergeant is not only her impressive resume listing her experience as a Marine, a Police Academy classroom instructor, a martial arts expert, her SWAT and narcotics training, and her work to implement programs including the RAD system and SHAARP; it is that she is an approachable, genuine, caring person who has chosen to serve and protect her community and country. She goes above and beyond to do more than patrol, investigate crimes, and complete incident reports. She engages in her community and aims to prevent crime by addressing the bigger picture of preventing people from making bad choices and enabling them to make better ones.

Cromwell understands the multiple meanings of the word “community.” Community isn’t just a bunch of people in a certain geographical area, it is also a feeling of fellowship with others as a result of sharing common interests, attitudes, and goals.

Cromwell serves our community as our schools DARE program supervisor by being visible and approachable to our young children and teens while serving as a role model that they can feel comfortable asking for help, receiving guidance and advice from, and reminding them to respect themselves and others in their behavior and interactions. She has worked in senior safety programs and serves on the Event Committee in planning and presenting at ceremonies for our military and veterans.

Our community has come to value Cromwell and we understand that whichever uniform she wears on Memorial Day, she is serving both her country and community with respect and honor. We know that as she talks with our children about street smarts, peer pressure, and protecting themselves from being victims of potential crimes, we understand that she has a need to exercise her rights to protect herself from criminals and offenders who may seek to stalk, threaten or harm her.

We need to work together to become a better community, to prevent abuse of power and bullying, to respect others rights, to end corruption and intimidation. As the old proverb goes “It takes a village to raise a child,” we thank Cromwell for being a member of our village, our community…and we support you.

Rebecca A. Boucher